Six Ways to Use Recycled Materials in Your Craft Projects

Making crafts from materials you have just lying around the house is not only fun and creative, but it’s also great for the environment. In this ever-mindful world of recycling, this is a great opportunity to think outside the box and create something with the kids out of things just lying around the house – everything from old cans, to plastic bottles, to milk jugs. Here are six ideas to get you started with your recycled crafts.

1. Sun catchers out of plastic lids – Clear plastic lids from berry containers, vegetables, or baked goods are perfect. If it has a sticker on it, then use a little Goo Gone to get it cleaned off. Then draw on it with a marker. Once your masterpiece has been created, punch some holes in the top and string some yarn through and hang on the window.

2. Tin can robots – There are tons of things you can do with those tin cans you get with your coffee. Now’s the time to raid your junk drawer and find all of those various different kinds of hardware floating around. A few pipe cleaners, a hot glue gun, and your imagination, and you can put together some tin can robots made out of old recycled materials.

3. Egg carton ants/caterpillars – Cut up some egg cartons, then paint them black, red, or green depending on whether you want a black ant, a red ant, or a green caterpillar. Once dry, decorate with some googly eyes, pipe cleaners, and pom poms.

4. Make your own kaleidoscope – With Pringles can you can make yourself one cool kaleidoscope. Decorate the outside of the can with a little paint and let dry. Punch a small hole in the bottom of the can with a nail. Cut up some small pieces of tissue paper. Glue them to the top of the can. Also put some tissue paper on a piece of contact paper that is cut to the exact size of the opening of the can.

Glue the contact paper to the rim of the can, then place the Pringles top over it. The top is the part that you will turn for the kaleidoscope and the contact paper stays stationary, making for some fun shapes and sights when you peek through the hole.

5. Sock puppets – You know all of those mismatched socks you have? Well, now you can put them to use. With some buttons, glue, yarn, and any other little craft scraps you have lying around, you can turn those mismatched socks into puppets and have a puppet show.

6. Paper bag heart – You know those bags you get from the grocery store? Well, make a decorative paper bag heart out of them. Simply cut out two hearts from the bag. Paint one side of each heart all different colors and fold over to transfer the paint to the other side of the hearts. Let dry.

Put some glue around the edges of one of the hearts, but not all the way; leave space to stuff. Glue the other heart on top and once dry begin stuffing with old newspaper, or actual stuffing if you have it. Once stuffed, glue the opening closed. Now punch holes all around the heart and thread yarn through, leaving enough excess yarn to hang the hearts with.

Go ahead and create your wonderful masterpieces today with whatever recycled materials you have lying around your home. Save these things from ending up in landfills and re-purpose them into some fun crafts with the kids.

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